The Screenwriter’s Guide To Movie Villains

The Screenwriter’s Guide To Movie Villains

“Every search for a hero must begin with something that every hero requires.  A villain.” (MI:2)

Crafting the perfect villain for your screenplay takes practice, patience, creativity, vision and passion.  You have to care about every detail in order to create a memorable force in your script.  Villains come in all forms and range from pure evil to misunderstood anti-heroes and everything in between.   The key is building a character that fits with your story.  A character you (and the reader) care about no matter how evil he/she might be.

The villain must be perfect!

Below you’ll find more than 50 resources dedicated to creating the perfect villain for your screenplay.  There are articles, breakdowns, countdowns, interviews, tips, tricks, strategies, videos and much more.

Check out more Ultimate Screenwriting Guides here.


How To Write A Great Villain | Script Shadow

Transcript: Script Notes Ep 75 Villains | John August

Creating Believable Villains For Your Story & Screenplay | Movie Outline

How To Write Compelling Antagonists | The Story Department

How To Create A Great Villain | Script Magazine

Creating The Perfect Villain | Write Your Movie

Creating Better Villains Part 1 | Big Think

Creating Better Villains Part 2 | Big Think

Screenwriting & The Problem Of Evil | John August

The Joker: What Makes Your Villain Tick | The Script Lab

How To Create A Memorable Villain | Gideon’s Screenwriting Tips

Protagonist And Antagonist: Beyond Hero And Villain | Narrative First

25 Things You Should Know About Antagonists | Terrible Minds

Creating A Worthy Villain | Screenwriting Smarts

Crafting The Perfect Villain | Gideon’s Screenwriting Tips

Try It From The Villain’s Point Of View | Let’s Schmooze

Two Easy Ways To Create Memorable Villains Using Life Experience | Script Magazine

3 Traits Your Hero And Villain Should Share | Helping Writers Become Authors

The Protagonist/Antagonist Relationship | Gideon’s Screenwriting Tips

The Key To Writing An Antagonist That Comes Alive On The Page | Time To Write

The Mean, The Bad & The Nasty: Writing Villains | The Editor’s Blog

Writing Better Bad Guys | John August

The Screenwriter’s Nitty-Gritty For The Better Bad Guy | Sydney Morning Herald

Why We Love Evil Characters | Gideon’s Screenwriting Tips

Adding Depth To Villains | The Writer’s Store

Write Better Villains | Spring Hole

How Do I Make My Villain 3 Dimensional | The Creative Penn

10 Comic Book Movie Plots We’re All Sick Of Seeing | What Culture

10 Questions To Ask Yourself When Creating A Villain For Your Screenplay | Screenwriting Spark


What Makes A Villain Memorable? | IGN

What Makes A Great Movie Villain? | Alexandra Sokoloff

14 Movie Villain Clichés That Should Be Retired | Buzz Feed

From Vader To Zod, What Makes A Great Movie Villain? | Story Punch

5 Characteristics Of An Epic Villain | Mythic Scribes

Why We Deserve Better Villains & How To Get Them | IO9

Two Things That Make A Great Villain | Offbeat Worlds

What Makes A Good Villain? | Flights, Tights & Movie Nights

The Joker Effect: Why Movie Villains Are Starting To Sound The Same | Flickering Myth

What Makes A Great Villain | Spill


AFI’s 100 Years…  100 Heroes & Villains | AFI

100 Greatest Movie Villains | Total Film

50 Worst Movie Villains | Total Film

50 Greatest Movie Villains | Cracked

50 Most Vile Movie Villains | EW

50 Greatest Villains In Literature | Telegraph

50 Greatest Movie Villains Of The 21st Century | What Culture

25 Most Powerful Comic Book Movie Villains | What Culture

25 Most Warped Movie Villains Of All Time | Screen Crush

10 Most Unsettling Movie Villains | Den of Geek



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